India was the fourth highest producer of iron ore in the world at 120.6
Mt. (Fe-content 61 percent) in 2004. China was the highest producer of
iron ore in the world at 335.6 Mt. (Fe-content 28 percent) followed by
Brazil at 270.5 Mt. (Fe-content 66 percent) & Australia at 234.7 Mt
(Fe-content 65 percent).
Iron ore in India
India was the third highest global exporter at 62.7 Mt. India's massive
deposits of high quality iron ore provide great support to the growth
of the country's iron and steel industry. In 2004, India had a reserve
of about 11.8 percent share in the global reserve of iron ore. India is
largely self sufficient in most of the minerals which include iron ore,
dolomite, fluorspar, gypsum, limestone, manganese ore, magnesite, sillimanite,
Resources of minerals in India
There are many evidence that exploitation of minerals like coal, iron-ore,
copper, lead-zinc has been going on in the country from time immemorial.
India is rich in the resources of minerals like iron ore, bauxite, manganese,
baryte etc. It has resources of 12745 million tonnes of iron ore, 2,525
million tonnes of bauxite, 76446 million tonnes of limestone, 233 million
tonnes of magnesite, 167 million tonnes of lead & zinc ore, 70 million
tonnes of barytes, 176 million tonnes of manganese ore and 90 million
tonnes of chromite. The reserves of iron ore, bauxite and manganese accounts
for nearly 7 per cent, 16 per cent and 6 per cent respectively of the
total known global resources of these minerals.
Mineral production in India
The gross value of mineral production in India in 1995 was approximate
Rs.2,70,000 million up from about Rs.1,800 million in 1961, i.e. by nearly
150 times. Mineral wealth and its exploitation have substantially contributed
to the growth of national economy.
Iron ore production
Ambitious programs were launched to increase the production of minerals
to meet the ever growing demand of the core industries like steel, non-ferrous
metals, and fertilisers, keeping in view also the higher exports for much
needed foreign exchange.
Minerals and Indian Economy
The new liberalised industrial policy leads to high and accelerated growth
in mineral industry to complement and supplement the revival and rapid
growth of Indian economy.
The gross value of mineral production in India in 1995 is estimated to
be approximate Rs.2,70,000 million up from about Rs.1,800 million in 1961,
i.e. by nearly 150 times. Mineral wealth and its exploitation have substantially
contributed to the growth of national economy. The contribution of mineral
production to the Gross National Product went up from 1.02% in 1960-61
to 1.54% in 1980-81. Minerals continued to play a vital role in India's
overseas trade too.
With the growth of production, employment in the mineral industry has
also grown phenomenally during the last few decades.